The island of Hiiumaa has declared 2023 the Year of Music in honor of Rudolf Tobias, with the main event being “Estonian Music Celebration on Hiiumaa: Rudolf Tobias 150.”
Rudolf Tobias (May 29, 1873, Käina – October 29, 1918, Berlin) was an Estonian composer, organist, and choir conductor who was the first Estonian to obtain an academic music education in both composition and organ performance. The “Estonian Music Celebration on Hiiumaa: Rudolf Tobias 150” concerts will take place from May 28th to June 17th at the Kärdla Church.
The program focuses primarily on the work of Hiiumaa-born Estonian music icon Rudolf Tobias. In addition, the works of Estonian composers Silvia Tobias and Helen Tobias-Duesberg (daughters of Tobias), Artur Kapp, Heino Eller, Mart Saar, Eduard Tubin, Ester Mägi, Eino Tamberg, Arvo Pärt, Erkki-Sven Tüür, Tõnu Kõrvits, Marianna Liik, and others will be performed.
Performers at the celebration include the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra (conducted by Olari Elts), Tallinn Chamber Orchestra, Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir (conducted by Tõnu Kaljuste), Estonian National Male Choir (conducted by Mikk Üleoja), Collegium Musicale, and Hiiumaa Chamber Orchestra (conducted by Endrik Üksvärav). The opening concert will be given by German organist Elke Voelker, with renowned Estonian performers Ain Anger, Mirjam Mesak, Paula Ernesaks, Aet Ratassepp, Mari Poll, and Mihkel Poll, among other Estonian interpreters, participating in the festivities. Hiiumaa’s young music students and ensembles will also showcase their skills. The artistic director of the celebration is Arne Mikk.
The initiators and organizers of “Estonian Music Celebration on Hiiumaa: Rudolf Tobias 150” are Enn Kunila, Arne Mikk, and the Hiiumaa Cultural Society. Tickets can be purchased through Piletilevi.